Visiting Brussels and Belgium

Bruxelles – Brussels – Brussel

Brussels is home to all the major European institutions. It is the official seat of the EU and many other political and economic decision-making entities, and boasts a growing number of businesses, organizations and international experts.

 
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Considered by many as the Capital of Europe, Bruxelles/Brussel is a bilingual (FR & NL) city with a vibrant night life. Worldwide known for its chocolate and beer, Brussels offers  a rich and variegated cultural offer with more than 100 museums. Trains, European history, comics, René Magritte, city sewer network, comic strips, wardrobe of Manneken Pis (the cute little statue inspiring our conference logo), musical instruments, plastics-based furniture, heart-shaped art pieces, those just a few examples of themes covered by the many museums in town.

International music festivals, traditional parades, and many more events attracts a large number of visitors to Brussels every year, especially in summer. Every two years around mid-August, the Grand’ Place « la plus belle place du monde » is covered by a Flowered Carpet of more than 600000 begonias. The first weekends of September (the one after our conference!) are traditionally dedicated to the traditional Festival of the Belgian beer and the Comic Strip parade.

Visiting the EUropean quarter of Brussels

Brussels hosts the European Commission, the Council of Europe, the European Parliament and many other European institutions. Most of the these buildings concentrate in a small area at the border between the districts of BXL 1000, Ixelles and Etterbeek. Here is a link to the Visitor center of the European parliament in Brussels. The recently opened House of European History offers a unique experience through the historical events that brought to the European Union.

Placed on the left side of the House of European History, the Lycée Emile Jacqmain is famous for being the set of this picture of the participants (Einstein, Bohr, Pierre and Marie Curie, Debye and many more) of the Solvay Conference on Electrons and Photons (1927). 

Some events taking place in Brussels the same week as BDS2018

 

 
BXLBeerFest‘, the new Beer festival of the city of Brussels, will take place on 25-26 August. 65 Brewers will bring more than 300 different beers to Tour&Taxi (metro Yser) 

The Royal Palace of Brussels will be open during our conference. We warmly recommend you to visit this impressive building located in the heart of Brussels and open for for just a few weeks during the year

In the occasion of the 60th Birthday of the Smurfs, the world-wide known blue creatures created by the Belgian comic artist Peyo, a human-sized Smurf Village will be installed at Brussels EXPO (metro Heysel, near the Atomium). You can’t smurf this experience!

For further information on Brussels, its nightlife, museums, summer events, visit the website of the official tourism agency of BXL 

Visiting the rest of Belgium

Main touristic destinations in the rest of Belgium as the cities of Brugges, Dinant, Antwerpen, Liège, Leuven, Gent are easily reachable from Brussels by train.

Touristic information on the northern region, Flanders, can be found here, while at this link you’ll get touristic information on the southern region, Wallonia.

 

Recommended trips

Dinant (1h40 by train)

 

Birthplace of Adolphe Sax, the father of saxophone, Dinant is town in the south of Belgium, located in a steep side valley  of the river Meuse. 

 

Brugge and Gent  (1h by train)

Brugge is a gothic town, well known for its canals and its connection with the school of Flemish Primitive painting. On the way back to Brussels, you should not miss a visit to the vibrant historical center of Gent.

 Leuven (30 min by train)

Leuven hosts the oldest university of Belgium. This pretty small town has an impressive gothic flamboyant city hall and one of the largest beguinages.

Antwerp (50 min by train)

Mostly known as a Diamond hub, Antwerp is a city where art, fashion, architecture and design would keep you busy for days. Its main train station is considered one of the best in the world.